Baty, after tearing up Minors, joins Mets in LA

April 17th, 2023

The Mets have recalled No. 2 prospect Brett Baty in time for Monday's series opener vs. the Dodgers at Dodger Stadium. He's batting eighth and playing third base for his season debut.

Baty, whom MLB Pipeline ranks as the No. 19 overall prospect, has been on fire at the plate for Triple-A Syracuse, hitting .400 with five homers, two doubles and a 1.386 OPS in nine games.

Manager Buck Showalter declined to discuss Baty's potential callup prior to Sunday's series finale in Oakland, but he said the day before that he's been paying attention to what has proved to be a formidable squad in Syracuse. Baty had homered in back-to-back games alongside teammate Ronny Mauricio, putting his prodigious power on display and raising his slugging percentage to .886.

"It's what he's supposed to do," Showalter said Saturday.

Baty's callup has been the subject of much speculation, as starting Mets third baseman has struggled at the plate to begin the season. Escobar entered Sunday 5-for-44 with one homer and a .394 OPS in 13 games.

"He's a big contributor here, on and off the field," Showalter said of Escobar. "We'll continue to make use of his skills."

Baty made his MLB debut after playing just six games at the Triple-A level last Aug. 17, memorably hitting a home run in his first at-bat. That proved to be the high point of his first stint in the Majors, as he sustained a torn UCL in his right thumb that required surgery and ended his season. In all, he hit .184/.244/.342 with two homers and five RBIs in 11 Major League games.

The Mets' first-round pick out of Lake Travis High School (Texas) in the 2019 MLB Draft, Baty has mashed at every level of the Minors. Given that the big league club has gotten less production from its left-handed hitters, who have recorded a .673 OPS with two homers in 15 games, Baty's bat could add some much-needed pop from that side of the plate.